Quotes

  • Top 7 Benefits of Networking

     

    Networking is a skill like any other you learn for your business, but sadly, it’s generally not taught in school. Typically, it’s something people pick up as they go, and speaking from personal experience, unless you’ve been given good advice or examples, chances are that you’ll make mistakes along the way. Keep making them, and those mistakes can cost you opportunities if they aren’t corrected.

    The benefits of networking is the first part of a series about networking. Over the five articles, you’ll learn what networking is and why you should do it; where to find events and opportunities to do it; how to prepare for it; what to do when you get there; and how to follow up to make your efforts worth it.

    What is Networking?

    The definition of networking isn’t really what people think it is in real use. Many people will tell you it’s showing up at an event, collecting a lot of business cards, talking about your business to anyone who will listen, and maybe making a pitch if they saw a “perfect in”.

    Wikipedia defines it as “…a socioeconomic business activity by which businesspeople and entrepreneurs meet to form business relationships and to recognize, create, or act upon business opportunities, share information and seek potential partners for ventures.” The first “definition” is just about the opposite of what you want to do, and the second one sounds pretty dry. But Wikipedia does touch on the real kernel of truth: relationships.

    networking colleagues

    In practical use in the real world, it can be summed up like this:

    • Networking is a long game that goes far beyond where you initially meet your connections. It’s not just about landing a job or finding your next employee. It’s something you should be doing your whole career, and it will help you build your career.
    • In networking, it’s not about the quantity of introductions of yourself you make, but it’s the quality of the relationships you build (which will help you get quality introductions).
    • Growth is key benefit in networking. This happens both personally and professionally by what you receive from others, but more importantly, what you generously give.

    Top 7 Benefits of Networking to You and Your Business

    1. Networking is an important factor in success.

    Many people who are the most successful in business (maybe the ones that make it look so easy and seem to get all the breaks?), have tapped into a strong network of like-minded individuals that are helping them along the way. You can access that kind of help if you think of it as an investment by putting your time and energy into creating mutually helpful connections. Think of it as part of your career development.

    First, you have to be visible in your community. You have to get out there and connect with people. It’s not called net-sitting. It’s not called net-eating. It’s called NETWORKING. You have to work at it.  — Dr. Ivan Misner of BNI

    2. Meet influential people.

    They say “It’s not just what you know, it’s who you know.” I have one more thing to add to that. “It’s not just who you know, but who knows you.” And I don’t just mean getting an introduction and exchanging cards. That’s the tip of the iceberg, and it’s going to take some time to explore it all. Once you have made some connections, the doors can open to meet people many levels above you in business. As a result, meeting these influencers happen from mutual connections, and it’s a big benefit of networking.

    3. Personal recommendations are a lot more likely.

    There’s nothing like meeting face-to-face, time and again, to really get to know another person. It allows trust to build. Once someone knows you well, they are more likely to help you, perhaps by facilitating a meeting with a higher level person in a company that could direct business or a job your way. This can make all the difference if you’re job-hunting, want to make a career change, or starting a new business. Personal recommendations come with the trust you build in knowing someone well.

    Networking event group

    4. Make real friendships.

    People that you meet at networking events, especially those that are in the same field, understand what other people in your life may not (for instance, what a company going public means, or the frustrations of client troubles). Once you get to know each other better, you can be each other’s sounding board, cheerleader, and support system. It’s the logical next step in forming a friendship, and continuing it could be lifelong. After all, you already have a lot in common!

    Call it a clan. Call it a network. Call it a tribe. Call it a family. Whatever you call it, whoever you are, you need one. — Jane Howard

    5. Allows you to help others.

    You should approach networking with the mindset of “What can I offer?” rather than “What’s in it for me?”, otherwise you will limit your success. This is the chance for you to be as generous as you possibly can, because helping others is the way to not only pay it forward, but to make an impression that lasts. Forming a mentorship (whether you’re on the giving or receiving side) could be invaluable to your career development.

    6. Opens new resources.

    No one can know everything, but communicate regularly with enough people and you are more likely to tap into the latest news of what’s happening. People you meet in networking will have recommendations about things like business coaches, professional development opportunities, the best people to hire for a job or outsourcing, early information about job openings or shakeups in the industry, books to read, and workshops to attend… The list really can go on, but let’s leave it at knowing that there’s a wealth of information out there, and people will share it with you.

    People networking at event

    7. Boosts your self-esteem and self-confidence.

    There are plenty of readers that will identify as introverts and convince themselves that that means they can’t meet people easily, therefore networking isn’t for them. Networking is for everyone in business. Regular attendance is important, so faces will become familiar over time. Remember, you’re there to be helpful. For instance, you’ll probably be asked for advice, because your opinion will matter. There will almost certainly be an opportunity to offer your skills and expertise because people are valued for what they bring. It may be out of your comfort zone, but that’s where the growth is.

     

    You may be wondering…

    …why I didn’t mention some other benefits that seem obvious, like getting new leads, making sales, hiring an employee, or booking a client. These are all things that can happen at networking events. Of course, the underlying agenda of everyone is to grow their business, but I argue that the deeper nature of business networking is building each other up as we build our careers. In improving ourselves and helping others do the same, the rest will follow. And we won’t have to do it on our own.

    Nothing is more expensive than a missed opportunity. — H. Jackson Brown, Jr.

    To sum up, this and the upcoming articles about networking are written in the hopes of saving others from making the same mistakes I’ve made. For instance, I absolutely know that I’ve missed opportunities to create real connections with people who could have helped me greatly, and all because I didn’t understand how to use networking the right way. I know it’s never too late to develop new skills, so if you’re up for it, follow along. Up next in the series – How to Prepare for Successful Networking. Get it right in your inbox, along with all the upcoming articles. (scroll down to subscribe)

     

     

     


    Choose your favorite images from the article and quotes to save and share from any of the below.

     

    networking pin image - 7 top benefits of networking in businessnetworking pin image - how networking can make all the difference to your careerNetworking pin image - 7 important reasons you need networking to be really successful

    networking pin image with quote - it's not called net-sitting. it's not called net-eating. it's called networking. you have to work at it. ivan misner

    networking pin image with quote - call it a clan. call it a tribe. call it a network. call it a family. whatever you call it, whoever you are, you need one.

    networking pin image quote - nothing is more expensive than a missed opportunity - h jackson brown

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

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  • 20 Ways to Cope with Anxiety – Mom and Teen Tested


     

    2020 Update: This article has seen a significant increase in new readers and I understand why. This has been a challenging year like no other, and it’s been felt so hard by young people. In this article I share that family members and I cope with anxiety, and I won’t deny that this year has been tough. We’ve utilized many of the coping skills listed here and they’ve made a real difference. There are updates to several coping skills on the list.

    I hope the article and list is a helpful aid in coping with your own anxiety, or that of someone you love.

    Much love, happiness, and health to you and yours ~

     

     

     


    Anxiety is something often ignored, misdiagnosed, and misunderstood. It’s normal to feel anxious at certain times and everyone does, but when anxiety begins to interfere with your life, it’s most likely an anxiety disorder.  Anxiety is something several members of my family cope with (me included!), but it wasn’t until my middle child was diagnosed that I began to understand that there are effective ways to help ourselves deal with it.

    National prevalence data indicate that nearly 40 million people in the United States (18%) experience an anxiety disorder in any given year. To learn more about anxiety and anxiety disorders: https://adaa.org/understanding-anxiety

    Over the years, through research, professional recommendations, and testing ways to cope with anxiety by my children and me, we’ve collected over twenty different effective ways to cope with anxiety. We find they can stave off, lessen the impact, or at least shorten the duration of our anxiety. It’s all about living as normal a life as we can. (I often remind my teens, and myself, that “normal” is a subjective term!)

    All of these are good coping skills for anxiety, but choose a few to get started and add more along the way.

    This article is not intended to diagnose or treat any medical condition. Check with your doctor or mental health professional.

     


    Twenty Ways to Cope with Anxiety – Mom & Teen Tested

    1. Control your breathing

    Controlling your breathing will help you feel more in control of yourself and your reaction to the way your anxiety makes you feel. It helps give oxygen to your brain, relaxes your muscles, and encourages you focus on something other than the thoughts that are causing the anxiety.

    2. Positive affirmations

    Clear out the negative thoughts with positive affirmations. Get into the habit of repeating a few of them several times a day, especially in the morning and before bed. They help align your thoughts on healthier ideas. (I know they have a kind of cheesy reputation in some circles, but saying kind things to yourself is a good for you, and much better than the negativity that’s rattling around in your mind.) My favorite app to use is ThinkUp, but you can check out others in a Top 10 list here.

    Update – Something my teens and I have found that was a pleasant surprise is that there are TikTok users that specialize in putting out positive messages, affirmations, and are generally uplifting. I won’t make specific recommendations because it’s a fast-paced platform. If you’re interested, I encourage you to look through with your teen. There are some mental health professionals that are putting out some very good material, but there are also some that aren’t professionals and  must mean well, but are questionable at times.

     

    3. Meditate for mindfulness

    I was late to the game in using meditation, despite many friends, professionals, and research telling me how great it was. Meditation has been shown to help anxiety, can actually change the brain, and a whole host of other benefits, and it’s been something that my teens and I enjoy doing together. Our favorite guided meditation app is Smiling Mind. It really does make a difference for our overall day-to-day, so don’t be like me and wait any longer.

    Update – I have been using HeadSpace since early April 2020. NY was kind enough to negotiate a deal with them since we were very much in the thick of pandemic freak-out mode in the state. The pandemic news has improved in the state, but this, as you know friend, is a very stressful year. I have continued to use it and recommend it.

    4. Do yoga

    The benefits of yoga include better mental focus, increased balance, burned calories, and stretched tight muscles. Controlled breathing is usually a part of it, which is something it and meditation have in common, therefore it also can be calming for anxious thoughts. I have truly lost a lot of flexibility and balance over the years, and it’s been a challenge, but I’m seeing real improvements and benefits from it. If I can do it, you can, too.

    Update – I have found that I’m never going to be an advanced yoga practitioner, but there are still benefits in doing even the simplest poses over and over. The rhythm can be a meditation of sorts. So, don’t give up on it.

    5. Get out into nature

    There’s a lot of scientific research to show that nature is very calming, and that our brainwaves settle into better patterns when we spend time there. Some research says 10 minutes is enough, others say 20 minutes should be the target time. I say that if the effort has been made to get outside, get in as much as you can. And this doesn’t mean you have to go to the middle of the deep woods. Go to a park, sit under a tree, or walk around your own back yard. It’s the perfect time for #6.

    Update – Walks have been essential for my family. Not only are we shedding some of the weight we put on due to comfort-eating and stress, but connecting with nature and each other has been a joy.

    6. Engage your senses

    We often go about our days mindlessly. This skill helps us be mindful. It’s also a great way to distract attention from negative thoughts. The technique is to choose five things you see, four things you hear, three things you feel (touch), two things you smell, and one thing you taste (in my family, we imagine tasting chocolate if there’s nothing else available). Take a few minutes to be mindful of your surroundings.

     

    7. Take a warm shower or bath

    This is a classic way to relax and calm your thoughts. I find that the process of taking a shower or bath is often enough to disengage negative thoughts. The bath or shower is a great place to be alone with your thoughts, however, and sometimes that’s not what we want when feeling particuarly anxious. My family members have playlists of upbeat music they use during that time. (Parents: Having timed playlists also helps eliminate overlong showers or baths.) In any case, the warm water is soothing and it gives you a chance to relax.

    8. Use essential oils

    This section could also be called “Things that smell good and make you feel happy”, which is exactly what I use essential oils for. Citrus oils are used liberally around my house because the bright scents are uplifting for us. For others, it might be warm cinnamon or floral blends. Find the scents that you enjoy and use them to help create a pleasant environment.

    9. Self-care

    Stress is something we all deal with, but anxiety can cause a stressful situation to blow up out of proportion. Self-care can help alleviate stress. Personally, having time alone is essential for me and it’s something I have to go out of my way to create. But, I do it anyway. Whatever you consider for your own self-care, choose something and do it regularly. Paying quality attention to yourself isn’t selfish or a waste of time. It’s healthy and important.

    10. Eat healthy

    This really is another form of self-care, but eating healthy is so important in all areas of your life. Managing your anxiety will be more difficult if your body isn’t healthy, and that includes your brain. We pay special attention to sugar in my family, and here’s why.

    Update – As mentioned above, we did some stress- and comfort-eating early on in the year, but we’ve been literally enjoying the fruits of our labor from our garden, have started using calorie logs – not so much to be very strict, but to make sure we’re not very lax – and trying some plant-based recipes. Being mindful of nutrition, rather than rewards or comfort, is what we’re working on for our relationship with food.

     

    11. Get moving

    Go to the gym, go for a walk, turn on some tunes and dance, attend a yoga class, take a ride on your bike, or any other way you choose to get moving. All that motion helps distract the anxious thoughts, and the resulting endorphins are our body’s way to reward us for the exercise.

    Update – We have discovered there are some effective and soothing motions that work well for us when the anxiety is building. By rocking side to side at the waist or stretching as widely as we can and then going into a big hug have been wonderful for us. I would recommend Googling “anxiety soothing motions” and see what works for you.

    12. Get your Zzzzz’s

    Getting enough rest is important for your mind and your body. But anxious thoughts often keep us awake or wake us up in the night. (I’ve seen my share of 3 a.m. wake up calls from my anxious brain.) A good and consistent bedtime routine is a must, and for that, or to get back to sleep, I need some help. I’ve found using an audio app to be the best solution. My choice is Relax Melodies. I use the free version, but the premium has so many cool features that I intend to upgrade to take advantage of them. (Unpaid review – it’s just that good!)

    Update – I have been using some binaural beat melodies from YouTube, as well. Some of them have black screens that won’t disturb your sleep. My favorite is this one.

    13. Limit your social media

    There’s nothing like comparison-itis, family or friend rants, or negative news posts to stir up anxious thoughts, and social media is a prime culprit. If you find that the obviously perfect lives of your contacts (they’re not, of course), online arguments, or troubling world news trigger anxiety, then do yourself a favor and limit your time there. This is equally important for teens.

    Update – It’s 2020. Social media is pretty much toxic this year. Seriously, be very choosy what you expose yourself to.

    14. Be productive

    Diverting your attention from your anxious thoughts to accomplishing something, however small, is a great way to cope with them. Choose something off your to-do list that you can complete quickly. Once you’ve done that, you can tackle the jobs on the list that are making you anxious, since you’re on a roll. (Right?) Another way to help alleviate anxiety and something that causes it is clearing the clutter. Again, set yourself a small task, like clearing a table. It’s a start, and embracing decluttering is going to make your environment less stressful.

    Update – Having extra time on my hands for a while meant that I was able to tackle a LOT of household chores. Once we got started, things started to snowball. The result, I felt much better accomplishing something, I had a calm (instead of cluttered) environment for me and my family, and I didn’t have time for anxiety.

     

    15. Get creative

    Creativity is a great outlet for stress and anxiety. If you don’t have hobbies, I recommend getting one. Being creative doesn’t necessarily mean painting or adult coloring books (although those are great), but it could mean doing crossword puzzles, gardening, sewing, building computers… Really, the list is endless. In short, use your imagination for something positive and creative.

    16. Listen or watch uplifting podcasts or videos

    I’m a big believer in keeping things positive and feeding my mind with only the best ideas. If you haven’t listened to podcasts or videos like TedTalk, you should give it a try. Here’s a few links to get you started.

    17. Spend time with someone who loves you

    Whether this is a friend, a family member, a spouse/partner, or your pet, spend time with someone who is non-judgmental, caring, and helpful in relieving stress, not causing it. My daughter will often come to me for a hug and snuggle when anxiety starts. There’s nothing like laughing, having an engaged conversation, or loving touch to help melt stress and anxiety when they start.

    Update – This has been such a tough thing for many of us. Being isolated from the people we’re used to seeing everyday, or our loved ones and friends isn’t natural.

    It has been the toughest for my daughter in our family. Video chats and watch parties have been her go-to and it’s helped. But, there are times when it’s not enough. Do what you can to connect in a safe and healthy way. It’s important to keep those relationships.

    18. Keep a journal

    Using a journal will be helpful in a couple of ways. First of all, it will allow you to say what you want to vent in a safe place and to get things off your chest and, hopefully, out of your mind. Secondly, it will allow you to keep track of things, times, people or situations that seem to trigger anxiety. By recognizing a pattern, you may be able to avoid an anxious time for yourself in the future.

     

    19. Let it go of some of your expectations

    Anxiety is often characterized by recurring negative thoughts, and there’s nothing like rehashing an old hurt or disappointment for the gazillionth time to get things stirred up. Forgiving and forgetting can be difficult, but getting anxious about the past on a regular basis is tough, too. Working through those feelings will be beneficial. We can’t change the past or what happened, but we can change what and how we think about them, and, consequently, our reactions.

    Update – Be kind to yourself. Speak kindly to yourself. Shed what might be unreasonable expectations of yourself – and others, too. When you’re feeling well is the time to take a look at what might be triggers for your anxiety. Use that time to work through some of them, and eventually leave them behind you. [My own way of doing this is that I envision the recurring negative thought as a ratty old piece of clothing. I really get into details of it. It’s beat up and ugly and I don’t want it anymore. If the thought tries to creep back in, that vision of the clothes comes to mind and I throw it in the trash.]

    20. Talk with a professional

    There may come a point when the coping skills you’re using are enough. There are certainly others that can be incorporated into your daily life. I’m happy to say that the stigma of seeking counseling is less than what it was in the past, and there are programs for all income levels. It’s a logical next step if your anxiety is interfering with your life on any regular basis.

    Update – Telehealth is a thing now. I have heard different opinions on what people think about therapy over the phone or by video. My thought is that if you need to talk to a professional – and at this stage of 2020, who doesn’t? – use whatever means you have at hand to do so. It won’t be forever, and you may end up changing your mind if it’s not your thing right now. I personally know a few folks who have done just that.


     

    My teens and I may have anxiety, but together, and incorporating these coping skills, we’re happy and healthy individuals living great lives.

    It’s my sincerest hope that you have taken away some ideas from this article and list. Save any or all of these quotes and Pinterest-ready images. And please share this article with someone you think could benefit from it.

     

    Wishing you all the best and good living,

     

     

     

     

     

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  • Five Power Quotes from Strong Women Role Models

    gradient background with text overlay: 5 Powerful Quotes from Strong Women Role Models

     

    This is a collection of powerful quotes from women who are influential role models for women and girls all over the world. If you’re looking for a shot of inspiration, these five women deliver. But, there are so many quotable and impressive women role models out there it was hard to choose, so I’ll be featuring more of them really soon. (Subscribe so you don’t miss them!)  Read on…


    Maya Angelou

    black and white mountain and sky scene with a text overlay: I love to see a young girl go out and grab the world by the lapels. Life's a bitch. You've got to go out and kick ass. Maya Angelou

    Maya Angelou was an American poet, singer, memoirist, and civil rights activist. She published seven autobiographies, three books of essays, several books of poetry. Maya is credited with a list of plays, movies, and television shows spanning over 50 years. She received dozens of awards and more than 50 honorary degrees. source

    Maya has an innate ability to cut to the chase, while still bringing a nurturing feeling to the conversation. I’ve always thought of her as a no-nonsense mother figure.

     

     

     

     

    Dolly Parton

    Sunset with wispy clouds with text overlay: If your actions create a legacy that inpires others to dream more, learn more and become more then you are an excellent leader. Dolly Parton

    Dolly Parton is an American singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist,record producer, actress, author, businesswoman, and philanthropist. source 

    She should be an inspiration to anyone wanting to become something “more”. Dolly’s truly her own creation, and the life she’s built when faced with so many challenges in her early life is remarkable. Read up on her if you aren’t familiar with her story.

     

     

     

     

    Diane Mariechild

    Flowers with a big sky shown with text overlay: A woman is the full circle. Within her is the power to create, nurture and transform.

    Diane Mariechild is an insightful author and leads workshops and lectures about women and Buddhism. She helps expand women’s mind through spirituality.

     

     

     

     

    Iyanla Vanzant

    sunset over a lush mountain top with the text overlay The way to achieve your own success is to help someone else get it first. Ilyana Vanzandt

    Iyanla Vanzant is an American inspirational speaker, lawyer, spiritual teacher, author, life coach and television personality. source 

    She’s a powerful speaker, a spiritual leader and an influential visionary.

     

     

     

     

    Oprah Winfrey

    night sky full of stars with text overlay saying Surround yourself with only people who will lift you higher. Oprah Winfrey

    Oprah Winfrey is an American media executive, actress, talk show host, television producer and philanthropist. source

    Honestly, you didn’t think I wouldn’t include her in this list? Whatever your personal opionion might be of her, her productivity and influence are forces to reckon with. She’s an empire-builder and we love her for it.

     

     


    These quotes from influential women role models are powerful. Use them to inspire and motivate you, and don’t ever forget you’re an amazing woman with plenty of strength, influence and passion to make your mark in the world.

     

     

     

    Want more quote graphics? Check these out:

    Quote of the Day – Powerful Woman

    Quote of the Day – Your Best Project Is You

    gradient background with text overlay saying 5 power quotes from strong women role models kelligoldin.com

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  • Quote of the Day – Your Best Project Is You



    Close up of woman smiling with text overlay - The best project you'll ever work on is YOU.

     

    The best project you’ll ever work on is you.



    Do you treat yourself as your best project, such as…

    • Invest in yourself with your time, energy, focus?
    • Make actual financial investments in yourself, such as a personal fitness coach, an empowerment coach, or a financial advisor?
    • Read anything lately or attended a workshop to broaden your mind?
    • Choose to travel?
    • Or even make an update to your wardrobe?

     

     

    How to do it

    There are many ways that you can be your own project. Choose a big project and work on it throughout the year, or (more likely to get done) choose a smaller one to achieve every quarter. Or even better, something to tackle every month.

    To give you examples and maybe some inspiration, here’s my personal projects:

    1. MonthlyAttend local networking meetings. As a solopreneur who works at home, isolation is a real thing, even with social media. It’s already created new connections, client leads, and support for me and my contribution to the groups has been appreciated since I offer those to others, too.
    2. Quarterly – Read a new book about personal &/or business development. I realize that four books a year is a little thin, but I only read two last year, so there’s improvement. Since I’m still very actively growing my businesses, my time is limited. But, I’m committed to expand my thinking, so four will be my minimum. (Note: I didn’t mean that I will only read four books this year. HA! I was referring to personal or business development. Thanks to those that were concerned and surprised.)
    3. Yearly – Weight loss AND fitness. This isn’t much of a surprise I think, since about 83% of Americans (I made up that number, but I bet it’s close) say they want to get fitter and thinner. My weight struggle is due to a couple of autoimmune issues, and lately, to a knee injury I had 6 months ago that still bothers me. It’s imperative that build up my strength and I lose the extra I put on plus more. I’m really tired of the knee pain. And I have a milestone birthday coming up. (Plenty of motivation, in other words.)

    OK! It’s your turn. What are you doing to make yourself your best project? Accountability is key, so make it official and tell me in writing in the comments below.

     

    Love quotes like I do? Check out these past posts:

    Quote of the Day – Powerful Woman

     

    Closeup of a smiling woman with a text overlay saysing: The best project you'll ever work on is YOU. width=”600″ height=”900″ />

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

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  • 10 Things You Can Start Today | Set Up For Success

     

     

    This is the second post in a Personal Development Series. This article gives valuable tips to set yourself up to be successful in business, in achieving personal goals… really in anything you want to pursue.

     


    woman leaning against a wall with an orange shirt that reads Slay Mode

    Personal development is about taking time to make changes in ourselves or our lives. It’s an investment of time, energy, thought, emotions and intentions to improve ourselves and our lives

    Sometimes we want to be successful with something so badly, but get stuck in the early stages. There are times when we work hard but need some help. And how do we know that we’ve done something successfully? 

     

    Here’s 10 life hacks to help set yourself up for success and you can start today!

     

    Establish your goals.

    First, make your goals reasonable. Like planning to run a marathon in a year rather than in 3 months when you’ve never run more than a mile.

    Secondly, make them measurable. If you’re trying to lose weight, you have a number in mind. A blogger will look for pageviews or subscribers. A sales rep keeps track of new accounts.

    Lastly, goals should be very specific. Break your big goals down into the essentials. I like to think of breadcrumbs leading me along the way to success. There are systems, apps and programs to help you do that if you don’t know where to start. (Trello is a new-to-me program I’m trying out.)

     

     

     

    Commit to your success.

    If you’re going to take on something, it’s going to mean you’re 100% behind it. This is not the time to be wishy-washy. Save yourself the time and heartache. Write down what you want to accomplish. Plan it out. Make it as detailed as you possibly can to see the way clearly. BUT, don’t get stuck in “analysis paralysis”. Write it down and edit it later if things change.

     

    Establish your “why”.

    I’ve heard this so many times over the years and it’s such solid advice. There will be rough patches and pitfalls, bad days and setbacks, and when the going gets tough, recentering your focus is so helpful. Remembering your “why” will give you the strength and resolve to keep on.

     

    Do some solid networking.

    Whether you’re looking for success for personal or business reasons, a strong network will help set you up with anything from good advice to resources to mentoring. Surround yourself with people who have already had the success that you’re working towards. 

    Check out Facebook groups that have members that can help you and that you can help. For offline/local networking, check out Eventbrite for meetups, workshops and events.

     

    Two women dressed in business clothes, one standing, the other sitting, looking at a computer screen

     

    Get a support network established.

    Whether you need a walking buddy to make sure you show up everyday, or a partner to take on more of the chores to free up more time to work, having someone (or several people) to step in from time to time is going to helpful. It’s OK to ask for assistance, especially when other things are demanding your attention.

     

    Continue your education.

    Read blogs, books, articles or papers to keep up on the latest in your interest or field of work. Learn a new skill to give more value to what you’re going now. Forecast or even get ahead of new trends to position yourself as an expert.

     

    Maintain your health.

    There’s nothing more distracting than health issues. Don’t derail your progress by something you mostly have in your control. Make better choices in your exercise, eating and sleeping habits. 

     

    Keep a positive attitude.

    Visualizing your success is a powerful way to achieve it. What will your life look like when you have success? What will change? Fleshing out as many details as you can when you envision it will make it more real and attainable. (I’m a big believer in positive thinking and what it can do for you.)

     

    Quiet your fears.

    Of course, there will be days when things go wrong. There will be setbacks. Some things will be in your control and a few might not be. Letting your fears of failure sneak in won’t do you any favors. This is not the time for “hope for the best and expect the worst”. Keep in mind that mistakes or misfortunes are great ways of learning things and can make us stronger. Keep your focus on moving ahead and don’t get bogged down by “what-ifs”.

     

    Celebrate your success!

    As I said before, your success is going to get accomplished in stages. Each stage will probably be broken down into smaller ones. Take the time to recognize your little accomplishments. Get excited about your progress. You’re on your path to success!

     

    Hack your life today. Create more success quicker and easier. Smash those goals!

    A background image showing a path through pink roses with 
text overlay: 10 Things You Can Start Today to set up your Success

    Personal development kind of your thing? Check out the first one in the series – 10 Things You Can Start Today – Work & Life Balance.

    Want to see more from me like this? Save this article to share it with others. Follow me on your favorite social media (links at top & bottom of the page).  Leave a comment. Subscribe. Any or all!

    Until next time… Kelli

    background with pink rose and silver ladies watch with text overlay: 10 Things You Can Start Today Personal Development Series, and Life Hacks to Set Up Your Success
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  • Quote of the Day – Powerful Woman

    True confessions time: I’m a quote junkie.

    There’s nothing like a bright and shiny new one I hadn’t seen before to get me worked up. Or an old favorite. Words of inspiration get me all… inspired! I just love ’em.

    Maybe you don’t get as excited as I do (or maybe you do and you’ve not outed yourself like I did), but I know you’re going to like the ones I post. I’m going to sprinkle them around from time to time. Subscribe so you don’t miss them. Save them someplace special so you can find them again (Pinterest board?) Share them with your friends (email, Facebook or Instagram?).

    Raging waterfall with text overlay There is no force more powerful than a woman determined to rise.

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  • What if your comfort zone isn’t comfortable anymore?

    I think, not that long ago, I could have been a poster child for sticking to the comfort zone. I had become very good at marching along to the same beat, and just zoning out anything that might shake things up. Maybe you have, too. It can be difficult to know when a safe place has become a hideout when it’s as familiar as your comfort zone.

    Things really hadn’t changed in my life for quite a while. As a matter of fact, it was downright status quo. But a few years ago, I found myself growing increasingly disappointed, unfulfilled and even angry with some aspects of my life. I realized that even though I was doing the same things I had done for years, it wasn’t what I wanted anymore. I was no longer content to let things be as they had been.

    Like the people described in this illuminating video I’m sharing below, I started making changes and then I started getting uncomfortable. Small changes could mean big changes were on the way. And then I could see them on the horizon, and that was really scary. That comfort zone was looking pretty OK for a while.

    I realized this was what was holding me back. Not that it was it was all that great to be there, anymore, but it was familiar. I had to get really brave if I was going to embrace this new path that was unfolding before me. Not everyone in my life was onboard, to be sure.  Even talk of change meant some upheaval for them, too.  Thankfully, I have a small, but supportive network that was a little shocked to hear how much I wanted to change my life, but stepped up and did what they could to help me on my way. Oftentimes, it is all that I could hope for. Sometimes, it isn’t enough. I really have to dig deep to be my own advocate. And the changes start to come.

    One if the areas I felt needed changing was my career. Even though I liked my job and the people I worked with were lovely, I started to question my place there. I wasn’t finding it fulfilling. I dreaded going in some days. I was having difficulty seeing it being a part of my life for the long haul.

    I began dreaming of being more autonomous and creative. It took root. Today, I find myself with that different career. One that suits me very well, since I can’t wait to get working every day and the hours seem to fly. There were times of fear, and uncertainty, and of wanting to give up because unfamiliar ground can be unnerving. I stuck it out, though, and now that I’ve come through, I know what’s in store for me when other changes need doing. That doesn’t mean that it’ll be easier. It does mean that I know it’ll be worth it.

    I still have a lot in store for me. I’m not done following this journey of change. And I’m not exactly sure what will be at the end, since there are a lot of unknowns that need resolved. What I do know is that while it’s uncomfortable, I’m creating something that is truly my own. It’s going to be the best that I can make it, because I’m doing it consciously, strategically, and thoughtfully. One of my favorite quotes during this time of uncertainty gives me direction and a real sense of peace.

    woman laying on her back while reading a book. text overlay says You are the author of your own story. If you're stuck on the same page, remember that at any moment, you can write a new chapter.

    You can have this, too. You don’t have to settle for less, especially if you’re questioning aspects of your life. If you start to hear a little voice inside you challenging your status quo, listen. Scary? Maybe. Uncomfortable? Almost guaranteed. Worth it? Absolutely.

    I decided to share this rather private part of myself for a couple of reasons.

    1. Along my journey, I’ve found several people at different stages of change. Some of them are courageous and are really doing what it takes to see that change through to the end. I’m as supportive to them as I could wish someone would be to me. And if you’re on this path with us, let me know. Sometimes saying things makes them more real. At the very least, you’ve got an enthusiastic cheerleader in me.

    2. I know there are many more people out there that either haven’t had a wake up call, but dearly need one, or are just feeling really and truly stuck. If this stirs up something that could mean a happier end to their story, then it’s worth sharing my own experience.

    Be brave, take up the challenge of finding what you want or need, and a way to make it happen. Start your new chapter.

    At any given moment you have the power to say:

    This is not how my story will end.

    woman laying on her back while reading a book. text overlay says You are the author of your own story. If you're stuck on the same page, remember that at any moment, you can write a new chapter.
    woman sitting outside while reading a book. text overlay says At any given moment you have the power to say: This is not how my story will end.

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  • Sunday Recharge: Avoid the Monday Blues

    There’s nothing like a morning where everything goes smoothly, the kids get off to school easily, and you get to work without any trouble. If it’s a Monday, it feels like hitting the lottery. Unfortunately, if you haven’t prepped for the upcoming week, the chances of this happening are about the same as you winning the Powerball.

    As tempting as it may be to stay in bed all day, or watch non-stop TV, or while away the hours on social media on a Sunday (or all of the above), if you haven’t prepared for the week ahead, you’ll probably be kicking yourself when you’re in full Manic Monday mode.

    Here’s my top 12 best ways to get ahead of the game and add a little of the “Sunday relaxation” feeling to the rest of the week.

    faded image showing a depiction of my idea of a relaxing Sunday, including a sofa with pillows, a magazine and coffee cup

    1. Take your time getting started in the morning. 

    Unless you’ve slept in and it’s already time for lunch, I recommend getting in a little coffee-on-my-own time, snuggling with a loved one (pets count), or just meditating for a little while before getting on with the day. You’ve probably had a week of rushing out of bed. Let it go today, if you can.

    2. Plan out your week. 

    Make sure your regular activities are on the calendar, planner, and/or phone, and check for any new events you’ll need to plan around. The more detail, the better. Collect any materials you’ll need in one convenient place.

    3. Get laundry done + plan your outfits for the week.

    Get an early start on this. (You can get in some of that TV time while you fold your clothes.) It’s easy to catch the weekly forecast, plan your outfits (and your family’s) around the activities you already know are happening for the week, and make sure there aren’t any panicked mornings because someone doesn’t have any socks to wear.

    4. Plan your meals for the week.

    Or at the very least, make sure there’s plenty of food in the house to fix and feed the family. I make a list of the dinners I’m planning, and there’s food for all the meals of the week, but that’s about as much of meal prep I get accomplished. Still, that saves loads of time and unexpected grocery store trips. (Kudos to the actual meal-preppers.)

    5. Make a meal together.

    Whether it’s breakfast, brunch, Sunday dinner or some other meal, share one with loved ones. Even better, get them in on the action and cook together. Sunday is my family’s usual day to do this. Trying new recipes the kids have chosen makes it extra special.

    6. Clean up the house. 

    Chances are that you’ve had a busy week and Saturday, so getting things tidied up will make the rest of the week more manageable. There’s enough going on during the week and facing a messy house just adds to the stress. Making it a family chore, with high-energy music in the background (like we do), almost makes it fun. And a timer helps, too.

    7. Make sure you don’t have “weekend regret”.

    There’s nothing like hitting Sunday night and realizing you haven’t done anything memorable. Check out Facebook events for your area if you’re stumped. Of course, if you usually have a full, busy weekend and you’ve chosen to do nothing, then that will memorable, after all.

    8. Reconnect with nature.

    If you haven’t had the opportunity to do it in the last week, you should do it on Sunday. Studies show that getting into nature, even for a short time, does amazing things for you.

    9. Pamper yourself.

    In my case, that means doing my nails with my daughter, or enjoying homemade sugar scrub (coconut oil, sugar, and your favorite essential oil), or soaking in the tub. Maybe you like to meditate, or swim, or get a massage. You know what indulgent pampering you enjoy. If you don’t, now’s the time to figure that out. You deserve it.

    10. Do a little work-related refresh.

    Yes, I know, it’s still the weekend and you still might want to deny that the workweek is coming, but getting in a little new knowledge will help make you more productive. Catch a podcast, read a blog, or do some research. Even learning new tips about how to be more organized, efficient or confident will add to your work arsenal.

    11. Check your email.

    Assuming you haven’t kept up on your email all weekend, you should check it before it gets too late. You’ll be able to address and plan for anything that might have come up, and you won’t get caught unaware on Monday morning. Just don’t get lost in it and use too much time. Set a timer or a limit to how many emails you will open, if needed.

    12. Engage your buffer zone.

    Give yourself around 2 hours before bedtime. You’re prepared for the week, organized, and well-fed. It’s time to completely decompress. Watch an entertaining movie. Get in some reading. Turn off the electronics. Get to bed at a reasonable hour (early, even!).


    Are you saying “How can I fit in 12 things all in one day?” Oh, yea. I used to think that, as well. But I’ve found that I can double up on a few and since most are less than an hour, it’s really not much of a stretch. Even though I work from home now, I face most of the same challenges that people who work outside of the home do. If you don’t get to all 12 at first, figure out what would help you the most and do that. And then do a little more the next Sunday. And repeat. Let me tell you, it’s worth it.

    I want to hear how your Sunday Recharge is going! Share your experiences and definitely share your tips, if you have any others to add. We’d all love to hear them!

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